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jiaksimipng
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Categories : Japanese | Fusion | Steaks and Grills | Burgers and Sandwiches

 
Having seen pictures of Ramen Burgers from Little Hiro, we decided to make a trip down to try out the latest dish in food fashion. When we finally reached, it turned out that Little Hiro was in fact a reincarnation of Burger Shack, which was a favourite lunch spot for my poly clique.The menu largely remains the same as Burger Shack, with rice plates, burgers and pasta, with the exception of some new items for each category.

 
Not forgetting the point of this return visit, I ordered a Chicken Karage Shio Ramen Burger ($8.90). The burger buns were replaced with ramen patties for this burger, which we found a bit alkaline-tasting though chewy and nicely grilled. The Karage Chicken was crispy, but the fried chicken seemed to have a thick batter. Egg Mayo sits in between, which was refreshing. Upgrading it to a set, you would get canned drinks and garlic fries at an additional cost of $3.00. The garlic fries was crispy and flavourful, pretty much like what Burger Shack used to serve.

 
Two of my dining partners followed my recommendation by ordering the Sanzoku Double Hamburg Steak Teppanyaki Rice Plate ($8.20). It comes with two beef patties which was not gamey and smothered in flavourful black pepper sauce. The Garlic Butter Rice was fragrant as well.

 
We could not say the same about the Flame-seared Teriyaki Salmon Teppanyaki Rice Plate ($10.90). While the salmon was flaky and well-grilled with a crispy skin, the Teriyaki sauce was extremely thick and salty.

 
Flame-grilled BBQ Chicken ($7.50) brought back much nostalgia, which was cajun-spiced and all familiar to what had been served in Burger Shack. Definitely something with the same great taste that we will never mind ordering again.

For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/04/02/little-hiro-hawaiian-japanese-bbq-grill-kings-arcade/

 

 

 
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Sanzoku Double Hamburg Steak Teppanyaki Plate,Flame-grilled BBQ Chicken,Chicken Karage Shio Ramen Burger
 
Table Wait Time: 15 minute(s)


Spending per head: Approximately $10(Dinner)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 4  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 4

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Starting the morning right. Smile Jan 25, 2014   
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Categories : Singaporean | Café | Brunch | Kids-Friendly

While Oriole does have a more accessible outlet in Somerset, the shophouse in Jiak Chuan Road still bears a character that is different from the modernised and some might call commercialised outlet. Adopting a Straits theme, the character runs deep in the location, interior and even the menu.

The Oriole Set ($8.50) is made up of a Pandan Kaya Butter Toast, a pair of soft-boiled eggs and a coffee of your choice which I got the Flat White.

 
Thick bread is a rare find for Kaya toast these days, and Oriole does not only serve two slices, but four for each serving. Each slice is smothered with an adequate serving of butter and kaya. The kaya tastes well of coconut and is sufficiently sweetened. Probably it was an intended for the butter to be lightly salted to make it seem healthier and less similar to those served in coffeeshops, but we thought it would have been better if they stuck to regular Planta or salted butter.

 
A classic pairing, Kaya Toast would never be complete without having soft boiled eggs served alongside. Eggs were fresh and slides down the throat with each slurp. For those who are slightly more health conscious, light soy sauce is available as a condiment as well. Have I mentioned that they serve their eggs to the table already opened; a good thing for those who have fumbly hands like me.

 
Easily one of the best Flat Whites I had so far, it was creamy but not milky, with the aroma of the blend lingering at the end of each sip.

 
Straits 7 ($6.00) is a cup of coffee that is exclusively available at Oriole Coffee Roasters. We were slightly confused as to why it did not come as an option for the Oriole Set as it was a Straits-inspired caffeinated drink and served in a traditional coffeeshop cup. It was uniquely flavoured, and seemed to suggest a hint of corn syrup and even butter was involved to provide the sweetness and silkiness of the beverage.

 
We also ordered a Carrot Cake ($6.50) to share. It came pretty huge with its height, but we found that the layer of cream cheese was too thick at the top, but lacking in the middle. There was a generous amount of walnuts, though probably the chunks were a bit too huge. The cake also felt as though it was missing of the taste of carrots as well.

For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/01/25/oriole-coffee-roasters-jiak-chuan-road/

 

 

 
 
Recommended Dish(es):  The Oriole Set
 
Spending per head: Approximately $10(Breakfast)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 3  |  
Service
 3  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 3

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Categories : European | Café | Brunch

The CBD area had been known for the wide variety of exclusive cafes in the region, and GAEST just adds on to the list of cafes situated there. Run by a couple of Caucasians, GAEST serves homemade food; from the cakes to even the bread of the sandwiches.
Potato Sandwich

Potato Sandwich

 
Only sandwiches and salads were served for lunch. The Potato Sandwich ($12.00) that my dining partner ordered was somehow a fusion of Baked Potato in a sandwich, especially with the clever use of bacon bits and sour cream which brought out the flavour of the soft potatoes. The bread was crusty at the sides, while fluffy in the middle. Watercress was added, and the sour cream helped in ridding off the bitter aftertaste of the vegetables.
Pork Sandwich

Pork Sandwich

 
Roasted pork is something that I cannot resist, which was I went for the Pork Sandwich ($13.00) straight away knowing that it contains roasted pork. Red Cabbage is known to be particularly bitter, however they have marinated them with orange which therefore managed to reduce the aftertaste of the vegetables. The crackling skin of the pork fitted well with the crusty bread, and there was enough fats to chew. Apple slices are also added to give it a fruity and refreshing taste.
Valrhona Chocolate Brownie

Valrhona Chocolate Brownie

 
There was only one cake offered the day we visited which was the Valrhona Chocolate Brownie ($4.50). We also opted for Greek Yoghurt and fresh fruits to come with it which came at no additional cost. The brownie itself was crusty on the exterior but really smooth and melt-in-the-mouth despite its cake-like appearance. Bits of walnuts were added to give it another dimension in texture. While the Greek Yoghurt did not seem to relate well with the brownie, the sourness paired up nicely with the sweetness and juiciness of the pear which turned it to a rather healthy side dish to the brownie.
White

White

 
Short White

Short White

 
The blends used for the coffee here are from Smitten, which ensures the quality of the coffee. The Short White ($4.50) has a smaller milk to espresso ratio compared to the White ($4.50), therefore more suitable for those who prefer stronger coffee.
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Potato Sandwich,Varlhona Chocolate Brownie
 
Spending per head: Approximately $13(Lunch)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 3  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 3

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Food with a cause! Smile Jan 13, 2014   
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Categories : Multi-Cuisine | Café | Kids-Friendly

Newly opened less than a month ago, Crossings Cafe is not just your regular cafe; it is a social enterprise full of opportunities to students with needs. Despite being new, they have already managed to offer internships to students from Assumption Pathway School, which is a school for the disadvantaged. Profits from the cafe are also claimed to be donated to charities for a good cause.

 
The menu sticks largely to a western theme, but there are some dishes served with a local twist. Chili Crab Pasta ($16.00++) was a signature dish in the menu, which was described to be cooked with a unique Crab Claw Meat Sauce. There were bits of meat in the sauce and while it was mildly spicy, it somehow felt a bit lacking as it still tasted pretty much of tomato, as though derived from a tomato base instead. Soft shell crabs were fried and presented atop the pasta, which provided a bite for the dish with its crispiness.

 
Since my dining partner was having pasta, I decided to go for a main which we decided on the Spicy Coriander Grilled Fish ($15.00++). It was fresh and flaky, and well-seasoned with coriander to remove the fishy odour. The tomato puree was tangy, fresh and felt like it was made from tomatoes instead of coming out of a can, and came with a moderate tinge of spiciness. The sauteed vegetables included pan-fried potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower and carrots which were tasty on their own, but would be better with seasoning.

 
Instead of having a Soup of the Day, Crossings Cafe’s daily special was the Panna Cotta of the Day ($5.00++). Chendol was the flavour on the day of our visit, and sure enough it came with red beans and jelly noodles. Caramel was substituted with Gula Melaka to simulate the signature taste of Chendol. The smooth and eggy pudding complimented well with the various condiments, and despite being a largely western dish, carried the local fusion well. This would be one item I would be glad to have on any other day.

While there are many cafes out there, not a lot of them operates with a social cause. We enjoyed our stay at the Crossings Cafe, for we were glad to have given the chance for the interns to showcase their abilities which were commendable. Some of the service staff whom attended our table despite being disadvantaged was extremely polite and even attentive, which is better than some other restaurants as well.

For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/01/13/crossings-cafe-catholic-centre/
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Chendol Panna Cotta,Spicy Coriander Grilled Fish
 
Spending per head: Approximately $12(Dinner)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 5  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 3

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Categories : Café | Desserts and Cakes

Hatter Street which is situated in Kovan is a place that sells many unconventional variations of conventional cakes and desserts. It is rumoured that one of the chefs had prior experience in Michelin-starred restaurant, Bo Innovation at Hong Kong. The unique Alice-In-Wonderland theme of the cafe would definitely attract young adults and children alike, with its vibrant colours and fairytale-like interior.

 
Smoked Sawdust Pudding ($5.00) is a recreation of a popular Macau dessert. Presented in the jar are crumbs and pudding, which also came with a smoky scent. The pudding was pretty creme brulee-like with a custardy texture which tasted eggy, while the crumbs were rubbly and dusty for some bite. This dessert would however not suit the palates for some; the smoky scent resembles the smell of joss sticks and hence would not appeal to all. We thought it was interesting, but it would have been better if there was more pudding as we found ourselves scooping on crumbs near the end.

 
From it’s name, the Whoaffles ($8.90) were sounding to be really impressive. We got ourselves the one with Pandan ice-cream with Gula Melaka. We loved the crispy batter but it was lacking on the eggy flavour. The Pandan flavour was evident and aromatic in the ice-cream, while the Gula Melaka was subtle on sweetness. A lot of the Gula Melaka was used for its plating and presentation however, which made the Whoaffle fall a bit short on flavour as there was not much of it drizzled atop the Whoaffle as a result.

 
It’s So Kumquat ($6.00) is the quirky nickname of the Kumquat Tart sold here, which is in line with Chinese New Year coming round the corner. Meant to be similar to a Lemon Meringue Tart, it was however slightly sweeter with a tint of citrus. We also loved the meringue which was cloudy and fluffy despite being torched and the eggy tart base held up its shape rather well. This was widely-agreed to be the best item we had for the visit.

 
Vanilla Caramel Dream ($3.20) was an interesting cup of tea. It had a very aromatic scent of Vanilla, but tasted lightly so with tea still being more dominant. It was also not sweet at all despite the caramel.

 
For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/01/05/hatter-street-blk-212-hougang-street-21/
 
Recommended Dish(es):  It’s So Kumquat,Whoaffles,Smoked Sawdust Pudding
 
Spending per head: Approximately $9(Tea)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 4  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 3

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